Taking control of your own life is no simple task. We have all done it – blamed situations on others or on circumstances we felt we couldn’t or even could control. But the responsibility of a Jew IS to be responsible.

What God Expects of Us

God gave us commandments. Some are positive and some negative – some things we are actively supposed to do, and others we are supposed to stay away from. Each Jew is supposed to be responsible for his own actions; for the good and the bad. God holds us each accountable for our actions. We are capable of the lofty task of being responsible.

Adam and Eve

The idea of taking control for one’s actions dates back as far as…the beginning of time! Adam and Eve, the very first people in the Bible, struggled with taking responsibility. Adam blamed Eve for causing him to eat from the Tree of Knowledge, and Eve blamed the snake. Various other places in the Bible discuss the idea of responsibility and the diffusion of responsibility.

Taking Responsibility Today

In this video, the students would not take control of their mistake to not study for the test. They excused themselves through a lie. The teacher understood that the students were avoiding responsibility and decided to teach them a lesson that would be valuable for the rest of their lives. Abraham Lincoln said, “You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.”

Stephen Covey, the author of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People relayed the message of responsibility perfectly: “Look at the word responsibility-‘response-ability’-the ability to choose your response. Highly proactive people recognize that responsibility. They do not blame circumstances, conditions, or conditioning for their behavior. Their behavior is a product of their own conscious choice, based on values, rather than a product of their conditions, based on feeling.”

And that is the goal.